5 July 2015

The English Missal (5)

In conclusion, I would like to make a few remarks about principle.

I have heard it argued that the Extraordinary Form is not part of the Anglican Patrimony. I find this difficult to understand, and, if you have read the first four parts of this piece, so will you. Of course, the Extraordinary Form was never officially authorised in the Church of England or the American and Australian branches of the Anglican Communion. But, then, neither was the Ordinary Form. Certainly, in England, the Anglo-Papalist movement which is our own much loved ecclesial background did use the Tridentine Rite, used it and loved it, and suffered persecution for that use and that love. The Missale Romanum was the gold standard, with the English Missal providing, over half a century, an intermediate stage in the journey towards its full adoption. That is the place we have come from.

In any case, the Magisterium has solved the matter.  Anglicanorum coetibus makes clear (Paragraph III) that Ordinariate clergy may use the Roman Rite as well as using their own liturgical books, and the Apostolic Constitution makes no distinction here between the two forms of the Roman Rite which exist by law in the Latin Church. And Summorum Pontificum establishes that, in principle, every Catholic priest of the Latin rite may use the Extraordinary Form without permission either from the Apostolic See or from his Ordinary. To put the seal on it, the Ordinariate Order of Mass promulgated by Rome incorporates the Preparation, the Offertory Prayers, the Libera nos, the Last Gospel, from the Tridentine Rite. These things are seen by Rome as part of the Anglican Patrimony. Roma locuta est.
This series is now complete.


Josephus Muris Saliensis said...

This is the most wonderful series of articles, that you dear Father. As ever with your multiple posts, one never quite sees where you are going until the punch at the end!

One odd thing strikes me, in the light of your final comments: The Ordinariate also uses nearly all the Roman Canon, but with the words of consecration borrowed from the Ordinary Form. This struck me as odd when it was promulgated, in the light of your words it strikes me as even odder now, and a point which perhaps Rome should address sooner that the than later. The one thing, as you rightly say, which is most certainly not part of the (very broad) Anglican patrimony is the Ordinary Form, and the inclusion of little, nearly random, bits seems most unhappy. They stick out like a sore thumb.

Anonymous said...

The English Missal in combination with the traditional (pre-1955) Roman Missal having formed an important and genuine liturgical practise of the Anglo-Catholic world, it`s continued use also under the Roof of the Ordinariate should be allowed soonest. Please, Father, work in this direction as you are one of the few remaining clergy still having living memory (and I guess also practise) of this tradition. An official approval of this practise as a lawful alternative would be the greatest gift you could achieve for the church.

neilmac said...

Dear Father

I am not sure whether or not you were familiar with S John's, Tuebrook, Liverpool, which had as its parish priest the saintly Canon Frank Sampson from 1946 to 1994. This parish used the English Missal, following the structure and prayers of the Missale Romanum, but using the Prayer Book Prayer of Consecration. After the upheavals of the 1960s, some changes were introduced. Thus the Last Gospel, birettas and maniples disappeared from all Masses; and at the Solemn High Mass, celebrated each Sunday and holyday, after the prayers at the foot of the altar and the censing of the High Altar, the Mass was conducted from the sedilia until the Offertory, with the Epistle being chanted facing west. In the late 1970s, at the behest of the altar servers, the maniples, birettas and Last Gospel were all restored, though, unfortunately, the Solemn High Mass was never fully restored to its full former glory.

Cannon Sampson, who died as incumbent, not being subject to the rules of retirement then in force as he had been inducted under an earlier system, celebrated Mass according the English Missal to the end.

S. John's, Tuebrook, was designed by G. F. Bodley and is one of his finest works, now being classified as a grade 1 listed building. In some ways it is a shrine to Bodley's work. If I remember correctly, the Lady Chapel was decorated by Hare, one of Bodley's pupils and the chapel under the tower, constructed in the 1970s, used much of the decoration from the rood screen of (I think) Dunstable Abbey, which Canon Sampson had saved from total destruction. The High Mass cruets and a number of vestments which may still be in use were made to Bodley's design. Stephen Dykes_Bower, the Bodley expert was the architectural consultant for many years. The building today preserves almost all of its Victorian splendour. The stencil work covering walls and ceilings is astounding.